By Richard Walker
The whole world knows Israel (which has about 400 nuclear bombs) has an itchy trigger finger and would like nothing better than to attack Iran with the United States leading the charge. But getting the backing of Washington for a full-fledged Middle East war that might not be limited to attacks against Iran has required Israel to revert to a tried-and-tested strategy of political pressure and blackmail.
Anyone interested in knowing how Israel’s leaders think only need look at recent statements emanating from Tel Aviv, threatening a strike against Iran at any moment. But perhaps the best way to understand the Israeli mindset is to recognize how Israel has continued over time to rely on a two-pronged approach to get what it wants.
First, it has exploited the power of its lobbying groups throughout the United States and has called on the support of a large number of pro-Zionist members of Congress, as well as the mainstream media, which is always willing to promote Israel’s Middle East agenda.
The second part of Israel’s strategy to drag America into another war can best be described as blackmail. It takes the form of a drumbeat of threats from Israeli political leaders and retired generals that if America does not act soon Israel will go it alone.
In the midst of Israel’s constant fear mongering about Iran, chairman of the Joint Chiefs Gen. Martin Dempsey paid a surprise visit to Tel Aviv on Feb. 1, 2012. At a meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Ehud Barak, Dempsey set out the White House position on the Iran issue. According to a report by respected U.S. journalist Gareth Porter, Dempsey made it clear a preemptive strike by Israel against Iran was unacceptable and would not have Washington’s backing. One could read Dempsey’s advice to Netanyahu as a signal Obama was opposed to attacking Iran and was not going to let Israel push the U.S. into a new Middle East conflict.
Alternatively, it is conceivable Dempsey’s visit was prompted by Obama learning Israel had already set a date for launching strikes against Iran, possibly in April. If that were the case, Obama may have felt his only option was to try to gain control of the situation by telling Israel it risked losing American support if it launched a preemptive strike. Given Obama’s need for Jewish support as he seeks re-election, it is likely Dempsey was tasked with assuring Netanyahu that Israel would have U.S. support for a war with Iran provided it was launched at a time that suited Obama.
Israel’s blackmail has always had a nuclear component, too. The late Israeli general Moshe Dyan said Israel should be like a “mad dog no one wanted to bother.” Dyan warned that Israel had the means “to take the world down with us. And I can assure you that that will happen before Israel goes under.”
Remember this quote—Ariel Sharon to Shimon Peres on Oct. 3, 2001 in the Knesset: “I want to tell you something very clear; don’t worry about American pressure. We the Jewish people control America, and the Americans know it.”
The Golem: Israel’s Nuclear Hell Bomb, by AFP correspondent Michael Collins Piper, explores the hidden story of Israel’s nuclear weapons program. It’s available from AFP, 645 Pennsylvania Avenue SE, #100, Washington, D.C. 20003 for $25 plus $4 S&H inside the U.S. Call 1-888-699-6397 toll free.
Richard Walker is the pen name of a former N.Y. news producer.
Young U.S. Jews Turning Against Israel
By Ralph Forbes
AFP has uncovered confidential Israeli reports that the Zionists are extremely concerned that younger Jews are losing interest in Israel, even going so far as to become “self-hating anti-Semites”—code for “they are disgusted by crimes of the Likud regime.”
For decades, whenever American Jews lost interest in Israel, the Israeli hasbara (the unofficial ministry of propaganda) screamed Israel was “threatened,” and the money and support rolled in.
But today, more and more Jewish youths are thinking for themselves and joining peace movements—and backing “boycott-divestment-sanctions” (BDS)—a movement that aims to put international pressure on Israel to recognize Palestinian rights by promoting a consumer boycott of Israeli goods and services.
So Israel’s homegrown men in black launched a preemptive strike against a BDS conference that sought to tell the truth about the Zionist occupation of Palestine at the University of Pennsylvania, which took place the first weekend of February.
The Zionist machine called out the big guns, former CIA director R. James Woolsey and a top-ranking propagandist for Israel, torture advocate, liar and Harvard law professor Alan Dershowitz, to fire the propaganda barrages—to crush PennBDS, a small branch of the global BDS movement, for daring to assemble and speak.
The suppressors assembled their forces under the banner “We Are One with Israel.” Penn Hillel, the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia, Israel Across Penn and the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America were some of the organizations mobilized to suffocate any criticism of Israel.
Even Penn State president Amy Gutmann got into the act. She wrote in a letter dated Feb. 2: “We are unwavering in our support of the Jewish state. Let me say in the clearest possible words: We do not support the goals of BDS.” Gutmann and board chairman David L. Cohen did everything they could to express their opposition “strongly and deeply”—but beyond that their hands were tied, thanks to the First Amendment.
The BDS conference was a great success, in spite of the school’s actions, which BDS supporter Susan Abulhawa called a “threatening and intimidating” atmosphere. Ms. Abulhawa gave the opening address. She said hundreds of laws and military orders create a world of oppression for Palestinians in Israel. She detailed 20 measures, including an Israeli law that outlawed the growth of Arab villages and a military order that jails Palestinians up to six months without a charge or trial.
“Everything we have has been taken from us,” she told the crowd of 300. “You will never break us,” she said as she neared the end of her speech. An overwhelming applause erupted from the crowd.
Many of the speakers were Jews critical of Israeli crimes. The crowd included many young Jews who wanted to hear both sides.
“For years, I didn’t want to get involved,” said Marlena Santoyo, who described herself as Jewish, “but I came because I want to support justice and equality for Palestinians and Israelis.”
Ralph Forbes is a freelance writer based in Arkansas. He is also a member of AFP’s Southern Bureau. Contact him at [email protected]